16 Apr, 2015

Finns aren’t what they used to be

BBC News | Business | Sean Coughlan | Education correspondent | 15 April 2015

No international education conference is complete without a reference to Finland.

Ever since it appeared at the top of international league tables more than a decade ago, it has been endlessly hailed as how to run an education system.

Finland, which faces a general election this week, has been the poster child for education reform and overseas delegations have made pilgrimages to learn from its example.

In particular it has been used to argue that you can have high results without an overbearing system of testing and inspection.

It was the country where pupils did not have to start school until they were seven, enjoyed the longest holidays and then basked in the glow of global approval when they topped the tables in the international Pisa tests.

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